My son, Gabe, and I hit the trail over the last two weeks for the Pacific NorthWest. It was our annual sojourn. I was conscious that next year will likely be his last summer at home before he is off to college. In that sense it was the trip of a lifetime.
Of course, in that sense, every trip is the trip of a lifetime because the world never stops changing.
We started out in Seattle and headed for the Cascade Mountains. After that we drove to Port Angeles, on the Strait of Juan de Fuca that separates Canda and the USA.
There we visited Hurricane Ridge for a day, so named for the 75 mph winds that come through during some storms. The views are magnificent, showcasing the Olympic Mountains. We climbed the tallest peak at the visitors station and stayed there for some four hours, while Gabe played the guitar.
Since it was the tallest point on a popular hike, people would often arrive at where we were and then stop to rest. Some would stay, enjoying Gabe’s guitar, catching their breath and taking in the view. It was a memorable half-day.
After that we headed over to the Makah Nation, in Neah Bay, which is close to the northwest most point in the continental United States. We had some great freshly smoked salmon there and spent time on the beach.
Our trip took us down through Washington state, Oregon and then to San Francisco where we got a personal tour from my cousin, Eric, that included Twin Peaks, the Castro, and Haight-Ashbury. It was the perfect mix of history and fun.
We started these trips when he was three and every summer since I have found time off the grid to spend together with him.
He is turning into a man. The clock doesn’t stop for him, me or any of us. The best memories come from these times together. But more important they bring us closer, take us into new territory and create a foundation for a lifetime.